This Tomato omelette is a vegetarian and vegan recipe of a delicious omelette that is made without eggs. A light, crispy and protein rich Indian veg omelette made with gram flour (besan) or chickpea flour, tomatoes, onions, herbs and spices. Make this hearty and wholesome plant based omelette recipe that comes together under 30 minutes for your next breakfast or brunch.
About Tomato Omelette
Before you tell me that there is no omelette without eggs, let me tell you that this unique variant of an egg-free omelette is called Tomato Omelette in Western India. It is served in most of the vegetarian Udupi hotels and is popular with many people.
It is also called Tomato Cheela in Hindi and Tomato Dhirde in Marathi language which translates to tomato pancakes. Basically this snack is a tangy variation of the Besan Chilla but popularly known as Tomato Omelette.
Here a base batter of gram flour is made with tangy tomatoes, sharp onions and bold spices like green chillies and fresh herbs like coriander (cilantro) to make a flavorful and bright version of a plant based vegan omelette.
While the restaurants do not add leavening ingredients to the batter, I do add baking powder which makes the texture light and a bit fluffy.
Kindly note that this vegan omelette does not taste like your egg omelettes. They have a nutty flavor, thanks to the gram flour and the texture is crisp, light and soft.
The tomatoes lend their faint umami flavor and tangy taste paired with the nutty gram flour and you get a warm, savory and spiced omelette. Do not worry if you do not have gram flour. You can easily sub it with chickpea flour.
Growing up I have had these eggless omelets in many vegetarian restaurants and I often used to make these for our easy snacking during my college years.
Tomato omelette recipe gets done in a jiffy and with some whole wheat bread, you get to savor a healthy as well as nutritious breakfast. This vegetarian Indian omelette is a savior when I am too busy during the morning breakfast hours.
It is best served hot with some toasted whole meal bread or brown bread or white bread accompanied with a side of dipping sauces like coriander chutney or mint chutney or homemade tomato ketchup.
These also make for a hearty breakfast or brunch. You can also opt to make sandwiches with them.
In India, some of the vegetarian restaurants serve a Club Sandwich that has this eggless omelette as one of the filling paired together with other stuffings. This club sandwich is truly delish and very filling.
How to make Tomato Omelette
Prep and Make Batter
1. Finely chop onion, tomatoes, green chilli and ginger. Also chop the coriander leaves. Measure and keep all the ingredients ready for making the tomato omelette.
2. In a mixing bowl take 1 cup gram flour or chickpea flour, ⅓ cup finely chopped onions and 1 cup of finely chopped tomatoes.
3. Next add 1 teaspoon of finely chopped ginger, 3 tablespoons finely chopped coriander leaves (cilantro) and 1 teaspoon finely chopped green chilies or ½ teaspoon of chopped serrano peppers.
Do chop all the ingredients finely. If chopped even in slightly larger chunks or pieces it becomes difficult to spread the eggless omelette on the skillet.
4. Add the following spices and seasonings:
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder (ground turmeric)
- ¼ teaspoon red chili powder or cayenne pepper
- 1 pinch garam masala – optional
- 1 pinch asafoetida (hing) – optional and skip it to make a gluten-free version
- ⅛ teaspoon black salt – optional
- salt as required
5. Add water and then with a wired whisk begin to mix everything. The batter has to be of medium consistency.
6. Mix and stir well. I used a wired whisk but you can also mix with a spoon.
7. If the batter is too thin then add some gram flour and if the batter is too thick then dilute with little water. Also make sure there are no lumps in the batter.
I used about 1 cup of water. Depending on the quality and texture of gram flour or chickpea flour you will need to add less or more water.
Make Eggless Omelette
8. Heat a skillet or a frying pan on low to medium-low heat. Smear some oil, about 2 to 3 teaspoons on the skillet.
Use a well seasoned skillet or frying pan so that the omelettes do not stick on it.
9. Once the pan is hot reduce the flame. Then with a large spoon pour the batter on the pan. Spread it gently but not too much with the back of the spoon.
The technique is similar to the way we make Pancakes. You can even rotate and tilt the pan.
11. Drizzle ½ to 1 teaspoon oil on the edges and top of the tomato omelette.
12. Let one side of the omelette cook. You will see the batter firming up and getting cooked.
13. When the base is crisp, golden then flip and cook the second side.
14. Let the second side cook until you see golden or lightly caramelized or browned spots on the veggies. Flip again a few times if needed and cook the vegan omelette till both sides are crispy and golden.
15. Remove the omelette on a serving plate. Make all the veg omelette in the same manner with the remaining batter.
Serve the Indian tomato omelette hot or warm with toasted brown bread or whole wheat bread or bread rolls accompanied with some coriander chutney or tomato ketchup or mint chutney.
- Add more veggies: For a healthier variation, include some grated carrots, spring onions, finely chopped spinach or any healthy greens. You can even add grated zucchini or bottle gourd. But remember when adding greens or watery gourds, be mindful of adding less water while making the batter.
- More Flours: You can also add 1 to 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour or whole wheat flour or maize flour to the batter.
- Crispy texture: Add more fat like oil or ghee or butter to get a crispy texture. Even using a cast iron skillet or cast iron tawa helps to get an even crispy texture.
- For a cheesy taste: Sometimes I add 1 tablespoon of nutritional yeast to the batter for a cheese like taste. You can even stuff the omelette with grated cheddar cheese or paneer to make a vegetarian version of this Indian omelette.
- Stuffing: You can also stuff these healthy omelettes with sautéed mushrooms or savory sautéed tofu for a more hearty and filling breakfast.
- Black salt: Adding black salt gives that light sulphur like flavor to the tomato omelette recipe which is naturally present in eggs. But feel free to omit black salt if you do not have it.
More Easy & Quick Breakfast Ideas!
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Tomato Omelette Recipe
- 1 cup gram flour (besan) or swap with 1 cup of chickpea flour
- 1 cup finely chopped tomatoes or 2 medium-sized tomatoes
- ⅓ cup finely chopped onions or 1 medium-sized onion
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger or 1 inch ginger
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped green chillies or 1 green chilli or ½ teaspoon chopped serrano peppers
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder – optional
- ¼ teaspoon red chilli powder or cayenne pepper
- 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)- optional, skip to make gluten-free
- 1 pinch Garam Masala
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder – optional
- ⅛ teaspoon black salt – optional
- salt as required
- 1 cup water or add as required
- 2 to 3 tablespoons oil or as required
Making omelette mixture
- Finely chop tomatoes, onions, green chilli and ginger. Also chop the coriander leaves.
- In a mixing bowl take gram flour, finely chopped onions, tomatoes, ginger and green chilies. Add the chopped coriander leaves.
- Then add the ground spices – asafoetida (hing), turmeric powder, red chili powder, garam masala powder, black salt and salt as required. Add baking powder
- Add water and with a wired whisk begin to mix everything. The batter has to be of medium consistency and without any lumps.
- Mix and stir well to make a medium consistency flowing batter. Depending on the quality and texture of gram flour, you can add more or less water as needed.
Making tomato omelette
- Heat a skillet, frying pan or a tawa. Spread 2 to 3 teaspoons oil on the skillet. Keep the heat to a low or medium-low.
- With a large spoon pour the batter on the pan.
- Spread it lightly with the back of the spoon. But do not spread too much.
- You can even rotate and tilt the pan.
- Drizzle ½ to 1 teaspoon oil on the edges and on top of the omelette.
- When the base is golden and crisp, flip and cook the second side.
- Cook the second side until you see some golden or lightly caramelized spots on the veggies.
- Flip again if needed and cook until both the sides are crispy and golden. Make remaining omelets with batter.
- Serve eggless tomato omelette with bread or buns or dinner rolls with a side of dipping sauces like tomato ketchup, coriander chutney or mint chutney.
- Batter Consistency: Do not make the batter too thin or thick. It has a medium flowing consistency. If the batter is thick, add some water. If it is thin, add some gram flour.
- Skillet: Remember to cook these omelettes on a well seasoned skillet or frying pan so that they do not stick onto the pan.
- More Veggies: For a more wholesome breakfast, include some grated carrots, spring onions, finely chopped spinach or any healthy greens of your choice. You can even add grated zucchini or bottle gourd (opo squash). But note that when adding watery gourds or greens, you will need to add less water to the batter.
- More Flours: For a light variation in taste and texture, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour or maize flour to the batter.
- Crispy Texture: To get a crispy texture add more fat like oil or ghee or butter when cooking these omelettes. Using a cast iron skillet or cast iron tawa also helps to get a crispy texture.
- More Healthy Variations: Add about 1 tablespoon of nutritional yeast to the batter mix for a cheese like taste. You can also add 1 tablespoon of ground flax meal to the batter. For a filling breakfast, stuff the omelette with grated cheddar cheese or paneer to make a vegetarian version of this Indian omelette. For a vegan version, stuff these healthy omelettes with sautéed mushrooms or savory sautéed tofu for a more wholesome breakfast.
- Black Salt: Including a bit of black salt gives a light sulphur like flavor to the omelette that is naturally present in eggs. But feel free to omit black salt if you do not have it.
Nutrition Info (Approximate Values)
This tomato omelette recipe post from the archives, originally published on March 2013 has been updated and republished on 27 November 2021.
Every single recipe of yours are simply perfect and yummy!!! Thanks for the varieties that you have given us!
Thanks so much and glad to hear that. Most welcome!
I tried this one too and it came exactly the way you pointed out, we loved every bite. Continue to do what you doing, most thankful
thanks again farida. welcome and sure i will keep doing what i love to do.
Your recipes are awesome. I just want to know instead of besan, can we use any alternative?
there is no alternative to besan. but in US and europe chickpea flour (flour from white chana) is easily available. that can be used.
I have tried this recipe and it was simply delicious.Everybody at home enjoyed it.
I would like to add that ever since I started following your website( about a year back) I have begun to love vegetarian food more.I never imagined that veg.food could be so tasty and versatile.Thanks to you I am able to prepare varied meals which is loved by all.
thanks winnie for the feedback and rating. there are many variety of recipes that taste good and can be made with vegetarian ingredients – not only indian but vegetarian recipes from other countries too. thanks again and most welcome.
Thanks. Made without oil. It looked different but taste was awesome.
Welcome Praju. Nice to know this.
I tried tomato omellette and it has become one of my kids favourite thanks Dasana your blog is really very helpful ????????
welcome kavita. glad to know that kids are liking the tomato omelette. thanks for your positive feedback on recipes.
Can we keep remaining batter in a fridge and use letter? Tomatoes and onions are already mixed in it
yes you can do this way. the batter might become slightly thin as the onions and tomato will leave water in it. if it becomes too thin, then you can add 1 to 2 tablespoon besan before making the tomato omelette.
For how much time should one side be cooked?
timing is difficult for me to mention as it varies with the type of pan used and the flame intensity. there should be golden spots on each side and some crispness. this means that the tomato omelette is cooked.
Hi, I’m a writer with Care2.com and would like to share your Tomato Omelette Recipe in one of my articles. Is it alright if I also use your photo of the omelette? If so, how would you like me to credit it? Thanks!
Welcome Zoe. You can use photo, if you give credit link (do follow link).
Thanks Dassana, I’ll definitely include a link 🙂
Yes , Tomato omelete .my mother used to do .
I too do this .
My daughter .varshs .also .
The best thing to .
true it is zatpat. quick to prepare and serve. thanks.
It was delicious!!! Thank You. I also added little bit of wheat and rice flour to the batter to make it little bit crispy….it turned out nice… 🙂
thanks kruti for positive views 🙂 and you are welcome.
All my omlettes broke?
the consistency of the batter must be thin and thats why. could also be due to the quality of pan. if the batter becomes thin, then you can add some more besan to slightly thicken it.
Yummy recipe.loved it
Going to try for first time. Hope it will be very tasty. Thankyou.
thanks and all the best.
Whenever we make tomato omlet at home it is always soggy from the center. Please explain why is this.
sameer, it never happens with me. you need to cook it well. also cook on low to medium flame.
Your recipe blog is my saviour. I follow your recipes and must say they turn out so good. Thankyou so much!!!
welcome sudeshna. glad to know this.
I tried this for breakfast and it turned out to be yammm 🙂 everyone liked it 🙂 thank you for posting this recipe 🙂
welcome meena. glad to know this.
Pls post as much veg recipie on my email.
Jamshed, we don’t send recipes by email. please subscribe to social media updates.
Thnks for your recipes it’s a gr8 help
I love this omlet delicious
Hi Dasssna, ur receipes with presentations are always good to refer. I am a big fan of urs. Currently there are problems going on in my home. I belong to Marathi family & married to Gujarati man. It’s been one year of our marriage, still I am not able to cook perfectly as my mon-in-law always keep changing her receipe style. I first need to be good in basic cooking i.e. Vegetable cooking. I just dont know at this stage, how I should move ahead my receipe is less tasty than her. (My hubby said).
Could you please help me in this? Any comments from you are always wecome.
now thats an issue meenakshi. try the popular recipes from the blog. they come from an experienced cook and i am sure you will be good in them. in a small comment, i am unable to tell you the intricacies of cooking vegetables. each veggie has different cooking times and also there are different ways to cook, like steaming, sauting, grilling or baking. i would suggest you to get your hands on some books which have basic indian cooking like cooking dal, rice, rotis and vegetables. you can also refer for some simple and easy recipes on the blog. there are many. use the search button on the top to search the recipes. also you can buy some gujarati books later. but first you will have to learn the basics and the know how of spices, lentils, flours etc. cooking is not difficult. just practice and patience is required. you can see how your mother-in-law cooks and ask for her recipes or suggestions/tips, if you have good terms with her. don’t worry. the more you practice, the better you will become. any query you can email me or comment on the blog. all the best.
your recipes are really good to make and was in search of this one. Will try it soon. Thank u very much …
welcome pramila and thanks for appreciating the recipes.
thanks easy to make good to taste
Hi made this today for breakfast…..yummy I also added ajwain seeds n til seeds ……I think so dat the tomatoes should be puréed to get nice thin omelettes ……thnx a lot for all the recipies …..now I don’t call up people home to find what to add n how ….I just browse ur site ……..well done dasanna
thanks a lot siri. tomatoes can be pureed and they will give thin omelette. however if you finely chop or mince the tomatoes and onions both, you can still thin omelettes. adding ajwain and til seeds is a really good idea. next time i will try your idea.
really very nice presentation of all recipes and very easy to understand. really like so much. thank u thank u so much dassana!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
thanks for this recipe. I just made them as a brunch for myself. im going to make them fresh for my husband this weekend. really love your recipes dassana!
thanks pam 🙂
really nice one recipe … n it’s easy to make quickly.. thxs to share this recipe … Keep Going 🙂
I just made this and your vegan banana bread and both turned out fabulous. My son has egg and dairy allergies and it was so nice to find your site and all of the wonderful suggestions you have for healthy yet still tasty recipes that meet his diet needs.
Thank you for taking the time to share these recipes!
Next up I plan on being more adventurous and trying to make either aloo paratha or masala dosa. Was wondering if you have a good recipe for Aloo baji? My hubby loves Indian food and that is his favourite.
thanks sarah. any food can be made delicious without eggs and dairy products. its a little tricky but once you get the knack of it, you can make excellent dishes. in fact just today, i made apple upside down cake and it was fab. no one could believe that there were no eggs or milk in this cake. will share the recipe soon.
do try the aloo paratha and masala dosa. these are famous indian snacks and you should try making them at home 🙂
i always get confused with aloo baji… is it a dry potato dish or potato fritters. in south india bajji means fritters and in west india, bhaji means both fritters as well as a potato dish.
giving you the recipe links of both, including a north indian punjabi potato curry. the curries can be served with rotis, pooris and even bread.
aloo bhaji/dry potato curry – https://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/poori-bhaji/
aloo pakora/potato fritters – https://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/aloo-pakora-aloo-bajji/
aloo sabzi/north indian potato curry – https://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/aloo-poori-punjabi-aloo-poori/
delicious and picture perfect… so looking delicious and easy… bookmarking it
Lovely blog. My first time here. WOuld love to try this recipe.
I just made this for breakfast. Absolutely delicious !!!
Thanks for a wonderful recipe.
thanks and welcome fareeda.
Yummy, I make this sometimes 🙂 Lovely pictures as usual!
Looks lovely Dassana. I always make them on a lazy sunday and everytime its a differnt combination of veggies – peppers, cilantro, mushrooms, onions and even sometimes seitan!!!
This is my first time seeing eggless omelette! Tomatoes and all the spices and herbs sounds fantastic. Kids with egg allergy can enjoy this omelette. 😉
This tomato omelette is saviour for my dinners too at times. When I am too tired to make dinner, I make this roll them up with some salad and yogurt and dinner is ready! 🙂
Great recipe! I will try this recipe soon. Tempting pictures too!
Veg omlette sounds like a great alternative…beautiful clicks
I just had the same last week …looks yum with as always lovely pics
looks like omelette 🙂 lovely one 🙂 i will try
Wow, never heard of an egg-less omelette before. This is definitely worth trying:)
Omelette without eggs!! Nice idea. Great looking spread!!
Reminds me of Adai.
That’s a delicious omelette! I agree with Sanjeeta — it has similarities to cheela’s 🙂
Lovely..looks similar to the Cheelas we make with besan…will be on breakfast table this weekend!
I’m so happy you posted this recipe. I used to make it, sans onion, years ago but have misplaced the recipe. For a couple of months I’ve been thinking of it and tried to recreate it. My memory failed miserably because I remembered it was with chenna. There is another recipe, which resembles scrambled eggs (made of fresh cheese) I must be mixing it with. I will go to the kitchen to try it out now 🙂
thanks lakshmi. i have heard about the one made with chenna but never made it. i usually make this one with besan as its the easiest one and gets done quickly too.
i have to try this…. its tooo tempting and i am a tomato fan.. will let you know:)